"This used to be a helluva good country. I can't understand what's going wrong with it." Football-helmeted good ol' boy Jack Nicholson provides something like a conscience to Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper's counterculture outlaw biker tale, the zeitgeisty smash hit that put New Hollywood on the map and made Nicholson a star. Nicholson was considering giving up acting when producer Bert Schneider asked him to replace Rip Torn in his pals Fonda and Hopper's low-budget biker movie. Laszlo Kovacs' adventurous cinematography and the Steppenwolf/The Byrds/Jimi Hendrix-heavy soundtrack set the tone, for both the film and an era. DIR/SCR Dennis Hopper; SCR/PROD Peter Fonda; SCR Terry Southern. U.S., 1969, color, 95 min. RATED R
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